Sunday, July 20, 2014

Strawberry Rides Again - Reflections

Upon our return to Darhan, we were all glad to see that our aging horse Strawberry Roan was in excellent health. He is back to his homeland and wears it well. We got him here about 7 years ago.  He is probably 14 or 15 years old now, which is pretty old for a Mongolian horse.  Josiah fits perfectly in the same kid's saddle that his daddy and Grandma Suzy also rode as children.  

When we were driving to Darhan from Ulaanbaatar a day after we got off the plane, Josiah woke up from his nap and exclaimed "Whoa!" at seeing all the free-range herds of livestock all over the prairie and crossing the road in front of us.  A few minutes later he announced for all in the car to hear:  "I like this place!"  So do we.

Back in Darhan

Well here we are, back in our three bedroom apartment in Darhan.  As we settled back in we noticed our family keeps getting bigger in number and size, but our living space is not.

So that means we have to stay on top of our western materialist tendency to accumulate more stuff.  We must be vigilant to let go of stuff we don't use.  True freedom is not in owning a lot of stuff, but making sure your stuff doesn't own you, someone smarter than me has said.  We can waste a lot of time categorizing and storing stuff if we're not careful.

Less is more.  As Jesus said, "Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions." Luke 12:15

We had a minor infestation of moths into our rugs in that we left out, especially the parts that we under the couch and in the hall runner.  We had to throw out some of them, but one is still good enough to use at work.  "But keep on storing up treasures for yourselves in heaven, where moths and rust do not destroy". Matthew 6:20

It's been good to get desk and office set up there at the Cama Project Center.  Setting up an office for Celebrate Recovery is a first step in seeing more and more CR groups built into local churches to help set folks free from destructive hurts, hangups, and habits.

One of the first days back in our apartment, our friends' children came knocking on our door with a basket of two fully prepared meals and a bunch of dairy products from their farm.   What a blessing!  Another couple nights later they had us our to dinner at their place.  The Shell family also has 5 kids, so we were 14 around one well stocked table.  

The summer is pretty warm here.  The forecast occasionally calls for rain, but there hasn't been much.  Only one brief thunder shower one morning last week for about 30 minutes.  Renee and I just took a Sunday after-lunch walk thinking we might need a sweatshirt.  We needed hat and sunglasses instead and didn't have them.  It's hot out there, probably 80!

Showing up during the Naadam summer fair festival season, a lot of places were closed for the 5 day National Holiday.  So it was a good time for unpacking and settling in.

Some times have fun have included the kids playing with their friends and school mates, who live just downstairs.  Also riding our horse Strawberry, and playing in dirt piles for the younger kids.  Later this summer we hope to go camping and maybe fishing.

Overall, it's nice to be back somewhere for longer than a year and to clear out of suitcases for a good long while God willing.  Pray for our churches and Christian brothers and sisters to overcome the current of culture dominated by power and poverty.  

May we be found faithful in making disciples and delivering the message to Mongolians.